Deka songster, Aaron Durand, who has been followed by the South Cariboo since he was a youngster winning 100 Festival of the Arts awards, will graduate from the University of British Columbia (UBC) with his master’s degree in opera in April.
In early 2009, when Aaron was first invited to participate in the UBC Opera Ensemble’s summer trips to the Czech Republic and China, Interlakes Lions put on a benefit for him at Interlakes Hall. This event raised $3,000 towards Aaron’s travelling expenses, so residents will be delighted to learn their investment in the young man has paid off in spades.
Aaron, now 27, has been singing frequently with the Vancouver Symphony, and recently auditioned for the Young Artists’ Program.
While home for Christmas, Aaron was notified he was the only baritone chosen for the Yulanda M. Farris Young Artist award. This is, in effect, a “job” with Vancouver Opera for a year, starting September 2012, whereby he is guaranteed four roles, and also understudies the lead baritone.
Aaron was also thrilled to receive the Boxer Career Development Grant from Vancouver Opera. Furthermore, he has won the Ben Hoeppner Scholarship from UBC. Hoeppner, a UBC graduate, is a world famous opera singer.
Community members send Aaron their warmest congratulations, and those who are able will be sure to catch one of his performances.